posted on Jan, 31 2005 @ 01:03 PM
”Require ALL EMPLOYERS to pay their employees a "living wage".”
My son Andy is a shift manager at a small fast-food restaurant as a part time job while he’s in college. He makes $7/hr and the cook makes $6.50;
one other wait person makes $6. There re two other shifts, with a total of 9 employees. The restaurant is owned by an oriental immigrant family who
work there themselves as necessary, but are of retirement age (late sixties) and this is their retirement (since they didn’t work in the US long
enough to get social security).
Since he counts out all the receipts, Andy knows exactly how much the place takes in on a daily basis, and since he’s one of the guys who checks the
invoices he knows exactly how much the food costs. Crank in about $500/month for the storefront, $1000/month in franchise fees, $500 for electricity
and city services, and $350 for liability insurance, and the owners clear $4000 a month! That’s $48,000 a year gross into the pockets of
these “fat-cat capitalist pigs”!
Now if they were to pay an additional $5/hr to the two part time managers, three part-time cooks, and four part-time waitpersons. Figure 9 people who
work an average of 25 hours/week is 225 person hr/week. Giving those people a $5/hr “living wage” increase is $1125 / week. Multiply that by the
4.33 weeks per month, and the owner’s gross goes from $4000 to minus $875/month!
Suppose you just gave them a $2.50/hr wage increase? Cool. Now the owners would gross $1,562.68 income per month.
Do the math, Dawnstar. This is Business 101, not brain surgery.
You pay everyone a “living wage”, and the Chaings lose their restaurant and their retirement, and 9 people lose their jobs. Thank you oh so very
”Offer those employers who honestly can't meet this requirements tax cuts and other perks if they can…”
Offering people “tax cuts and other perks” means that the government will raise everyone’s taxes to pay for those perks, so that any “living
wage” increase people get is wiped out by their having to subsidize the small businesses.
”… 1. Prove that there is indeed a "need" for them to get help to pay their salary obligation. “
Force them to go through all the paperwork and government forms to“prove that there is a need…” Phenomenal! We’ll have another
huge federal bureaucracy, just like the welfare office or the unemployment office or the IRS, and every business owner will be spending his time
filling out government paperwork to be reviewed and rejected by the government bureaucrats whom, of course, will be living off our taxes.
Mmmmm! Big government! Yummy yummy yummy.
” 2. Have in place salary caps at $70,000.”
So now you want the government to tell us all how much money we can make? Let’s see, I wonder how many bright young kids will got to medical,
dental, law, or engineering schools if they know that the will be capped at $70k a year.
Let me think… hold on a minute..
Ah…. Got it! exactly zero.
Dawnstar, you’ve just removed any incentive for people to work hard to advance themselves. But no problem, we can just import more engineers and
doctors and dentists from India, and keep on having them provide us with the help desk guys for our computers, right?
”3. Have limited funds in reserve.”
Limited funds in reserve? Great! The fifty thousand dollars the small business owner has saved up to buy the new ovens or the refurbishment of his
restaurant or a couple more dryers for his Laundromat or maybe a Christmas bonus for his employees is now going to be locked up in a government escrow
account that pays 3.5% per year. Whoopee.
“And, well, the government should be doing some things also... Say heck with the wto and the like and start protecting our markets
Sure, Dawnstar. We’ll slap big tariffs on all foreign goods, which means that you won’t be able to buy a Honda Civic unless you want to pay
$25,000 for it, which means the other countries are going to do exactly the same thing, so we won’t be able to sell any of our goods and our trade
deficit, already in the stratosphere will blow out somewhere into the orbit of Mars, and the country’s debt service will be right up there with it.
”5. Make realistic efforts to get the cost of living lower..”
Cool. You tell me how to do that, and I will go out right now and rent a tuxedo to wear to hear your acceptance speech in Stockholm when you
win the Nobel Prize in Economics next year, because if you can figure out a way to get the cost of living lower, you will definitely win the Nobel.
”6. divert any savings in the welfare rolls directly to these programs that will help the companies pay the living wages, and maybe a few tax
cuts for the rest of us....”.
Savings? Savings? Your scheme to raise the minimum wage is going to double the welfare rolls, for cripes sake! What kind of savings
will you get from that?
”…in other words, this money can't be sent into all those nice pork projects, or iraq, or anywhere else. It is to be used to help adjust our
economy to one of self sufficiency, which can only happen if the wages are enough to support the employees and their families.”
Have you ever taken a course – high school or college – in macroeconomics?
”OK I think you left out an option. Option c is for the comapnies to accept a lower profit for the fat cats at the top, so they can afford to pay
a more equitable wage to the people who do the real work.”
Who defines what is “equitable”, Groingrinder: you or the people actually providing the jobs? The CEO of my company is responsible for the jobs
and futures of almost one hundred thousand people; I don’t care how much he makes, I think he’s worth it.
But even if you think that we should follow the lead of other industrial success stories like Cuba and North Korea and fix the wages of the capitalist
pigs, most of the jobs in this country are in the little companies with less that fifty employees, an owner who works 80 hours a week, and a
razor-thin profit margin.
You folks need to think this stuff through. If your ideas worked, it’d be great. But they simply don’t, and I’m not being sarcastic or
facetious when I say I’m sorry, because I really wish they did.
But they don’t.